The track pad on your Mac laptop gives you the flexibility to customize the movement of your fingers across your track pad in certain ways that can give you instant control of options such as: show desktop, swipe between full screen apps, zoom in and zoom out, swipe to view the next or previous page and a bunch more.
Open System Preferences from the Apple menu and select “Track pad.” When the Track pad preferences box opens, notice that to the right, you can view exactly how to use your fingers on your track pad to perform certain functions.
At the top of the Track pad preferences box select the “Point & Click” tab. If you select “Look up & Data” detectors, when you first highlight a word in a document or web page and you use your three center fingers and tap your track pad once, a smaller window will open with the definition of the word you highlighted.
If you select the “Secondary” click box, when you tap with two fingers, it will open the menu as though you right-clicked your mouse, and when you select Tap to click and you tap the track pad with one finger, it will act just like you are left-clicking your mouse. At the bottom, you can move the slider either right or left to change the tracking speed with which your cursor moves across your screen.
Go to the top and select the “Scroll & Zoom” tab. One of my favorite and most useful gestures is the Zoom in or out. This is done by pinching with two fingers and to zoom in, you spread your two fingers apart and zooming back out is done in reverse by bringing your two fingers back together.
When using your laptop without a mouse, these gestures can help facilitate your work and play when using your laptop. I recommend you go through each of the tabs, watching the examples to the right and selecting those options that you find most helpful.
For more than 15 years, Scott Lindsay has helped thousands of people better their skills, publishing more than 500 articles about Apple and Microsoft software, the computer and the Internet. You can reach Scott for comments or questions at ScottLindsay@live.com.